KR OnlinePoetry


The air of a place takes doing. Not to mention the mistake of this morning, but mention it. Cut crystal. Might as well hold the rain back with two hands. There is no one in the bed upstairs, only a heavy square of sunlight going oblique where a redhead once was. Who ordered this orderliness? It deserves, instead, a fractured parasol, a split lip like a diagrammed smile. In her opinion, not enough wagons rut slowly westward, not enough mountains plumb the evaporated seas. Oh, to be a nautilus in those hills curled like a piece of sleep, spiraling wider in her sleep, incorporating every shawl of salt, high tide. The deer smell it and come leaping. The highways are all aswerve. That insect, tinnitus, works its fork in her stills.

Movement source: Anna Pavlova performing “California Poppy”

Benjamin Landry is the author of Burn Lyrics, Particle and Wave, and An Ocean Away. He received a 2016 Ohio Arts Council Individual Excellence Award for his poetry, which has appeared in journals such as American Poetry Review, Kenyon Review, and the New Yorker. Learn more about his work at